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Патент USA US3046016

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July 24, 1962
Filed April l2, 1960
2 Sheets-Sheet 1
"55.5- gg
July 24, 1962
Filed April 12, 1960
2 Sheets-Sheet 2
United States Patent Office
With the above and related objects in view, this inven
Frederick W. Kuliclre, Jr., Philadelphia, Pa., assigner to
Kulicke & Sofia Mfg. Co., Philadelphia, Pa., a corpou
ration of Pennsylvania
Filed Apr. 12, 1960, Ser. No. 21,7036
12 Claims. (Cl. 269-60)
Patented .luly 24, 1962
tion consists of the details of construction and combina
tion of parts as will be more »fully understood from the
`following description when read in conjunction with the
accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a micro-positioning
manipulator embodying this invention.
lFiG. 2 is a sectional view taken along lines 2-~2 of
This invention relates to a micro-positioner or micro
FIG. l.
rnanipulator and, more particularly, relates to -a work 10
FIG. 3 is an exploded perspective View of the micro
table type device `for controlling the sub-miniature posi
tioning of a part or tool in three planes.
Modern day manufacturing and assembly procedures
often require that a particular part and/or tool be posi
tioned and delicately oriented with respect to another part
or tool in order to perform incident operations with a high
degree of precision. Such precision operations usually
positioning manipulator.
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary exploded view showing a modi
iication of the invention Aadapting the manipulator for
horizontal movement and positioning along the X-axis
and Y-aXis only.
Referring now in greater detail to the drawings in which
similar reference characters refer to similar parts, there is
illustrated a »micro-positioning manipulator comprising a
hedrally along the X-, Y- and Z-aXes wherein the distance
base, generally designated as A, an X-axis slider or first
through which displacement or manipulation occurs is as 20 stage, generally designated as B, axially reciprocable in a
certainable only by vmicroscopic observation Ior micrometer
horizontal plane upon the base, and a second stage or
measurements. It is of especial importance in the fabrica
-axis slider, generally designated as C, horizontally
tion of semi-conductors, transistors and electronic tubes,
reciprocable on the first stage along an axis transverse to
during experimental, laboratory, as well as production
the reciprocation thereof whereby a point on the second
handling, that a component ‘be manipulated rapidly and 25 stage is adapted to be oriented within a horizontal plane
necessitate the minuscule movement of the part or tool tri
consistently into proper configuration without impediment
of positioner backlash or play and without the manipula
tive device being subject appreciably to the effects of tem
perature changes as to require continual adjustment.
by manipulating the first and second stages along their
respective Y- and Y»axes.
As shown in FIGS. l `and 3, a third stage or Z-aXis
slider, generally designated as D, is coupled to the second
Prior high precision positioners required such extremely 30 stage C by la mounting bracket D1 through a third stage
close tolerances in the fitting of their components and
support member D2 and is reciprocably slidable on a ver
assemblies as to make the costs thereof prohibitive.
Furthermore, former designs, in utilizing fine tolerances,
close fittings `and screw pressure pre-loading, made these
manipulators particularly vulnerable to irreparable per
manent `damage as a result of accidental shock or extremes
of temperature, and, at the very least, constant readjust
ment and re-alignment.
It is therefore an object ‘of this invention to provide a
tical `axis so that a point on the third stage may be oriented
tri-axially yby selective manipulation yof the first, second
and third stages. Spring clamping means El, E2. and E3
resiliently couple respectively the first stage B to the base
A, the second stage C to the first stage B, `and the third
strage D to the support member D2, each clamp being
tensioned in a plane perpendicular to the plane of the
corresponding stage and slidable `axially therewith.
micro-positioner capable of smooth, rapid and accurate 40 The `base A comprises a substantially rectangular metal
manipulation along X-, Y- and Z-axes.
plate having a pair of grooved V-shaped races 12 and 14
Another object of this invention is to provide a multi
which extend rectilinearly along the upper surface 16
stage micro-positioner for precisely controlling the move
thereof in spaced parallel relationship. The under sur
ment into position of a part or tool during manufacturing
face of the base A is longitudinally recessed at 18 to aC
or assembly operations.
45 commodate the spring clamp El, and a pair of spaced
Another object of this invention is to provide a sub
V-shaped races Ztl and 22 are grooved in the roof of the
miniature positioning device which during manipulation
recess 18 parallel to the races 12 and 14. Parallel notches
will insure a steady measured movement with minimum
2d and 26 are formed in the upper surface 16 inboard
friction and without backlash or play.
of the races l2 and i4 to hold therein coil springs 29
Another object of this invention is to construct a high 50 and 31 which resiliently direct the first stage B in a pref
precision micro-positioner which will automatically com
pensate for changes in temperature without requiring any
manual internal adjustment.
erential direction. Spring hanger pins Z5 and 27 project
vertically upwardly from the notches 24 .and 25 so that
the pin heads extends immediatay above the level of
Another object of this invention is to construct a high
the surface 16 adjacent the right hand edge of the base
precision -micro-positioner at minimal cost wherein pos 55 A as shown in FIG. 3. The heads of the pins 25 and
sible damage caused `by accidental shock or overloaded
27 retain the coil springs 29 and 31 in tension, the oppo
conditions is substantially eliminated.
Another object of this invention is to construct a high
site ends of the springs being looped about hanger pins
(not shown) downwardly depending from the under sur
precision micro-positioner whose components will natural
of the first stage B adjacent the left hand edge there
ly fall into accurate registration without the necessity of 60 face
of. A relatively large diameter bore 30 vertically eX
over-burdensome tolerances required in their fabrication.
tends through the base A, the side wall of the bore
Other objects of this invention are to provide an irn
surrounding a stud 32 of the spring
proved device of the character described which is sturdy
clamp E1 and acting as a position limiter for the axial
in construction, economical to produce and which is highly
movement of the first stage B as will be more fully de
efficient in operation.
65 scribed hereinafter.
A split clamp 34 is affixed to the right hand edge of the
base A by a screw 35 threaded into tapped hole 36.
The split clamp 34 is tightened about the barrel of a
tween for holding coil springs 68 therein in a manner
micrometer 38 by a screw 37 so that the spindle of the
micrometer is free to -move axially when the conven Ur
similar to that previously described. Pins 69 upwardly
projecting from the slots 66 and 67 engage one. end of
the springs 68 while the other ends of these springs are
looped about pin 70 downwardly depending from regis
tional knurled handle is rotated by the operator’s fingers
tering slots 72 and 74 in the second stage C. A Y-axis
in the usual manner. A plurality of counterbored mount
micrometer 73 is affixed to the right hand edge of the
ing holes 39 are rectangularly positioned about the base
A for conveniently lixing the micro-positioner to a work
The iirst stage B or X-axis slider is also substantially
rectangular in configuration, the lower surface of this
first stage B by split clamp bracket 71 so that the m1
crometer spindle will abut against notch 73a in the sec
ond stage C. Ball separators 75 and 76 having slots
therein engaging upon pins 75l; .and 76b maintain the
metal plate having .a V-shaped race 40 and a race 42,
tion. Spaced races 82 and 84 in the under surface of
the Y-axis slider C register with complementary races
62 and ‘64 in the X-axis slider B, note again being in
rectangular in cross section, rectilinearly extending therein
in spaced parallel relationship. When race 40 is set into
complementary registration with race 12 of the base A,
Y-axis slider balls 77, 7S, 79/ and 60 in spaced configura
vited to the fact that race 64 is of rectangular cross sec
the race 42 will correspondingly register with the race
tion rather than V-shaped to provide for facility in align
14. It is to be observed that the rectangular conligura
tion of the race 42 requires a coarser center to center
ment without requiring excessive center to center machin
ing tolerances. The upper surface of the second stage C
machining tolerance than would pairs of complementary
raceways V-shaped in configuration since the latter would
require maximum precision in machining for accom
modating ball bearing pairs 43, 44 and 45, 46 in smooth
guide spring clamp balls 87, 88, S9 and 90 longitudinally
therein, clamp separator 91 retaining these balls in spaced
apart position. The wings 92 and 93 of the spring clamp
Ball separators 47 and 48 maintain each of the ball
pairs 43, 44 and 45, 46 in spaced relationship, separator
47 having spaced holes 43a and 44a of a larger diameter
than the balls and freely passing peripherally thereahout,
and spacer S having holes 45a and 46a to correspond
has a pair of spaced V-shaped races 85 and 86 which
E2 act as upper races for the clamp balls 87, S8, 89
and 90 and slide thereover when stud 94 threadedly en
gages tapped hole 52 of the first stage B after the threaded
end passes through aperture 94a in the spring clamp E2,
through aperture 91a in the separator 91, and through
bore 95 in the Y-axis slider C. The second stage C acts
ingly embrace the balls 45 and 46. Notches 47a and 48a 30 as a support member for the first stage B similar to the
in the respective spacers respectively engage on pins 47b
manner in which the base A acts as a support for the
and 4811 upwardly extending from the races 12 and 14
íirst stage, the bore 95 performing the function of posi
tion limiter with respect to Y-axis movement of the sec
ond stage C.
to effectively limit the longitudinal movement of the sep
arators with respect to these races.
Longitudinally extending slots 49 and 501 intermediate
When the micro-positioner is used solely for manipula
the races 40 and 42 in the first stage B register with the
tion in the X- and Y-planes, a cover plate is mounted
slots 24 and 26 in the base A and define `a channel there
upon the second stage C as shown in FIG. 4. The cover
plate 96 is relieved at 97 on the under surface thereof to
between for retaining the springs 29 and 31 in non-inter
accommodate for the spring clamp E2 and screws 98
ferent position. Tapped holes 51 and 52 in the first stage
B are utilized for assembling the spring clamps E1 and 40 extending through counterbored holes 98a threadedly
E2 to that stage.
engage tapped holes 99 in the second stage C. The upper
surface of the cover plate 96 supports the part to be
The spring clamp E1 is a flat spring of substantially
rectangular configuration having a central planar portion
manipulated into position, and if desired, may have mount
53 with off-set resilient wings 54 and 55 integrally and
ing holes (not shown) conveniently disposed thereabout
for securing the part thereto.
obliquely diverging from the edges thereof. The stud 32
The Z-axis stage is incorporated upon the micro-posi
extends through an aperture 56 in the spring clamp E1
tioner by securing angle bracket D1 to the upper surface
and threadedly engages the tapped hole 51 of the first
stage B after freely passing through bore 30 of the base
of the second stage by mounting screws 100 extending
A. Ball pair 57 and 58 roll longitudinally in the slot
through counterbored holes in that stage and engaging
20 sandwiched between base recess 18 and the wing 54, 50 tapped holes (not shown) in the bottom surface of the
while ball pair 59 and 60 are sandwiched against the slot
bracket side members 101 and 102. Web 103 has an
22 by wing 55. Clamp separator 61 is a rectangular
opening therein intermediate the side members for ob
thin metal sheet of rectangular configuration having
taining access to stud 104 after assembly of the spring
notches 57a, 58a, 59a and 60a at the lateral edges thereof
clamp E3, the under portion of the web being relieved
for maintaining the respective balls in spaced relation
so as to clear the spring clamp E2. The support mem
ship. A central hole 61a encircles the stud 32 and
ber D2 for the third stage slider D is mounted to the
limits the freedom of movement of the clamp separator
bracket D1 by screws 104 held Within counterbored
holes 105 in the side members 101 and 102 and threaded
It is thus easily seen that the spring clamp E1 will
into tapped holes 106 in the support member.
glide along the X-axis with the movement of the stage B 60
The support member D2 is a metal plate notched at
when the anvil of the micrometer 38 pushes against the
107 to receive split bracket 108 for holding micrometer
hardened notch 38a of that stage against the tension of
109. The front surface of the third stage support mem
the coil springs 29 and 31. At the same time, fiexure of
ber D2 is grooved at 110 and 112 to deline races for
'wings 54 and 55 will cause the clamp E1 to resiliently
guiding the third stage slider D along the Z-axis. Slots
urge the stage B into surface to surface engagement with
114 and 115 are cut in the front surface to retain springs
the base A While the springs 29' and 31 preferentially
116 and 117 which, when tensioned between hanger pins
maintain the stage B in abutment with the anvil of the
118 on the support member D2 and pins (not shown) on
micrometer 38. Maximum longitudinal movement of
the interior surface of the third stage D, resiliently urge
the stage B is limited by the side wall of the bore 30
the latter against the micrometer 109. V-shaped races
which will abut the stud 32 in the extreme displaced 70 120 and 122 are machined in the opposite surface of the
position thereof.
member D2 to guide the spring clamp E3 along the
The upper surface of the stage B has a pair of spaced
Z-axis over balls 123, these balls being sandwiched be
V-shaped races 62 and 64 rectilinearly extending therein
tween the winged races 124 `and 125 of the clamp E3
and transversely oriented with respect to the races 40
and the races 120 and 122 and longitudinally spaced by
and 42. Spaced slots 66 and 67 are grooved therebe 75 third stage clamp separator 126.
The third or Z-axis stage D comprises a metal plate
the upper surface of said base, said first stage further
having parallel rectilinear races in the upper surface
thereof transversely disposed to lower surface races
thereof, a second stage having parallel rectilinear races
in opposed horizontal surfaces thereof, the races in the
lower surface of said second stage registering with the
having a rectangular notch abutting the anvil of the mi
crometer 109, the notch having a hardened surface 127
to resist wear.
The front surface of the stage D has a
plurality of tapped holes 128 formed therein so that
parts or tools may be conveniently secured to the stage.
A pair of rectilinear races 130 and 132 are grooved upon
the inner face of the plate D so as to register with com
plementary races 110 and 112 on support member D2.
Hardened steel balls 133 glide longitudinally in the sand
wiching races 110, 130 and 132, 112 respectively, each
upper surface races of said first stage, ball bearing means
interposed intermediate the opposed registering races,
spring clamping means interconnecting said. base and said
first stage in slidable surface to surface `engagement about
the corresponding ball bearing means, and spring clamp
pair of balls being axially spaced by hall separators 134.
The separators 134 have spaced holes of larger diameter
ing means interconnecting said first stage and said second
stage in slidable surface to surface engagement about
the corresponding ball bearing means whereby a point on
said second stage is adapted to be oriented Within a plane
than the balls 133 and include a notched portion there
between for engaging limiter pins 134b on the face of
support D2 projecting from the stage guiding races 110
and 112. The stage D is coupled to its support member
D2 by the spring clamping member E3, the stud 104 ex
by selective manipulation of said stages.
5. The invention of claim 4 wherein each of said spring
clamping means comprises `a fiat spring member- resiliently
tending through respectively the aperture therein, the
compressing the respective stages into surface yto surface
opening in the clamp separator, bore 13S, and finally 20 engagement, and ball means slidable with said spring
screwed into threaded hole 136 in the Z-axis slider D.
members and supported therewithin whereby the spring
clamping means are axially recíprocable with the recipro
As is apparent from the foregoing description, the
spring pre-loading, i.e. spring clamping members El, E2,
cation of the respective stages.
and E3, substantially eliminates the need for frequent ad
6. The invention of claim 4 wherein micrometer means
justment, and possible damage to the balls by accidental 25 añ’ixed respectively to said b-ase and said first stage and
shock loading is reduced to a minimum because the
resiliently coupled to :said first stage and said second stage
spring limits the load.
Lateral freedom for one row of
respectively manipulatably displaces said first and second
stages along the respective recíprocable directions of move
ball bearings intermediate the respective stage and its
support member greatly simplifies tolerances with respect
to center to center machining and also eliminates tem
ment thereof.
7. The invention of claim 4 wherein a third stage is
perature effects since the rectangular race automatically
compensates for such discrepancies. Each stage is re
coupled to said second stage and is recíprocable along an
siliently urged hy tensioned springs against its microme
ter positioner thereby enabling smooth, accurate and
by a point on said third stage is adapted to be oriented
axis intersecting the plane of manipulation thereof where
tri-axially by selective manipulation of said first, second
quick manipulation along each of the X-, Y- and Z-axes 35 and third stages.
8. The invention of claim 5 wherein said flat spring
members each include `a substantially flat central portion
fined by the side wall of the respective stage bore.
having a pair of `off-set resilient wings integral therewith
Although this invention has been described in con
and obliquely diverging from opposed edges thereof, ball
siderable detail, such description is intended as being 40 bearings carried within and supported by the Wings against
illustrative rather than limiting, since the invention may
the corresponding adjacent race, and ball separators spac
be variously embodied and the scope of the invention
ing and longitudinally limiting the axial movement of the
is to be determined as claimed.
ball bearings within `the respective races.
What is claimed is:
9. In `a micro-positioner having `a stage slidably recip
l. A micro-positioning manipulator comprising a base, 45 rocable with respect to a supporting member, registering
a first stage axially recíprocable on said base in a plane
spaced rectilinear races in opposed faces of 'the stage and
parallel thereto, a second stage recíprocable on said first
supporting member, ball bearing means interposed
stage in a plane parallel thereto along an axis transverse
without backlash or play, and each of the micrometers
insures a steady measured movement up to the limits de
between the opposed registering races, spring clamping
to the reciprocation thereof, resilient means interconnect
means slidable with the stage `and urging >the stage into
ing said base and said ñrst stage in slidable surface to 50 face to face engagement with the supporting member and
surface engagement, resilient means interconnecting said
ball bearing means interposed between said spring clamp
first stage and said second stage in slidable surface to
ing means and said support member whereby said stage
surface engagement whereby a point on said second stage
may be manipulated with minimum friction.
is adapted to be oriented within a plane by selective
l0. In a micro-positioner having a >stage s'lidably recip
manipulation of said first and second stages along the 55
rocable with respect to a support member, registering
respective axes of reciprccation thereof, and a third stage
spaced rectilinear races in opposed surfaces of the stage
coupled to said second stage and recíprocable along an
axis intersecting the planes of manipulation of said first
and second stages whereby a point on said third stage
and the support member, ball bearing means interposed
between the opposed registering races, spaced rectilinear
is adapted t0 be oriented tri-axially by selective manipu 60 races in the opposite surface of the -support member par
allel with the first mentioned races, a fiat spring including
lation of said first, second and third stages.
2. The invention of claim 1 wherein micrometer means
afiixed respectively to said base, said first stage and said
second stage, and axially coupled to said first stage, said
second stage and said third stage respectively, manipu 65
latively displace said stages along the respective recip
rocable axes thereof.
a substantially flat central portion with a pair of resilient
off-set wings integral ltherewith and obliquely diverging
from opposed edges thereof, ball means sandwiched be
tween the second mentioned races `and the adjacent wings
respectively, and a stud having a threaded end and an
enlarged head, the head engaging the central portion `of
the flat spring and the «threaded end passing through an
aperture therein and freely extending through a bore
3. The invention of claim 2 wherein spring means asso
ciated with each of said stages respectively urge said
stages resiliently into engagement with said respective 70 in the support member to thereafter engage a comple
mentary tapped hole in the stage whereby the stage is
micrometer means.
clamped to the support member through the
4. A multi-stage micro-positioner comprising a base
having parallel rectilinear races in opposed horizontal
plane of slidability and the spring itself is slidable With
the stage.
surfaces thereof, a first stage having rectilinear races in
11. The invention of claim 10 wherein said stage sup
the lower surface thereof registering with the races in 75 ports a second stage thereabove.
port member about the first mentioned ball bearing means
and being slidable with said stage about the second men
tioned ball bearing means.
12. A micropositioner comprising a `supp-ort member
having spaced rectilinear races in opposite ysurfaces
thereof, a reeiprocably slidable stage having spaced rec
rtilinear races registering with the races in one surface
of `said support member, ‘ball bearing means interposed 5
between the registering races, »spring clamping means hav
ing ñexible races complementary with the races in the
other surface of `said support member, and ball bearing
means interposed between the complementary races and
retained in `said spning `clamping means, said spring clamp
ing means resiliently ‘coupling «said stage with said sup
References Cited in the file of this patent
Hu'ntsb‘erger ___________ _.. Aug. 8, 1932
Pigman ______________ __ Oct. 27, 1936
De Rentiis ____________ __ Jan. 19, 1943
Fermanian et a1 ________ __ July 24, 1956
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